Last year I began an editorial series entitled Confessions of an Editor-in-Chief. I managed three entries, and it’s about time that I bring it back today with number IV. For the remainder of 2010, I plan to write brief and to-the-point articles about various happenings or goings-on in the gaming industry for the sole purpose of relaying my opinion and hopefully sparking intelligent discussion/debate.
I’ve subtitled this piece Insulting DLC in light of the Stimulus Map Pack that our beloved publisher Activision recently released as a timed exclusive for owners of the Xbox 360’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. For $15, you can download three new environments for the game’s online multiplayer, and relive two favorites from the original Modern Warfare (Crash & Overgrown). Well to that I say: S-C-R-E-W Y-O-U Activision! I admit that you almost had me, especially since I love the returning maps. However, I’m right with the other fortunate few that have chosen to boycott this absolute nonsense and save their money for legitimate gaming or life purposes. I already paid $80 for the Hardened Edition version of the game, and you want me to increase that investment to a near $100? Get lost! At least EA has the decency, regardless of the underlying motive, to provide FREE maps for Bad Company 2.
The ‘value over time’ argument isn’t even appropriate here. With that, you’d essentially be trying to tell me that this map pack lies on the same level of fully-featured XBLA downloads that are actually worthwhile (GTA IV: The Lost and Damned/Ballad of Gay Tony, Fallout 3’s DLC, Shadow Complex, ‘Splosion Man, Trials HD, Bionic Command Rearmed, etc.), not to mention that Activision somehow deserves another inevitable $15+ million in revenue for slapping together some polygonal objects, textures and whatever else goes into the less-than-strenuous work of making a new map. For crying out loud, the content didn’t even work properly when it was finally made available! I don’t care if it was mostly the fault of the Live servers, that just proves that the most vital testing of the product did not happen as necessary. I don’t appreciate the attempt to mock my intelligence, or rob me of well-earned money.
I refuse to put down that kind of cash, and even $10 is a bit of a stretch for only three new locations and two regurgitated ones. If and only if the price ever comes down will I consider the purchase. (Would it have killed them to throw in more Spec Ops missions, weapons and perks? Apparently…) Plus, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if this was already prepared before the game’s historic launch, and Activision was just waiting in the wings because they knew how popular the packs have been for World at War and Modern Warfare. Well, your obvious greed hasn’t fooled me, and I pray my not-yet-victimized fellow gamers won’t fall prey to it either. I actually hope that PS3 and PC players are additionally infuriated by this, and have already decided to blow it off as much as they’ve been. Seriously Activision, grow a heart. You’re a joke.